Rising above the house and gardens, the tower of the medieval abbey is a constant reminder of the history of this once sacred place. The Abbey dates back almost 1000 years to 1064 and St Francis himself is documented to have visited on at least two occasions while travelling between Assisi and Gubbio. Long before Roman occupation of the area (around 310 BC) there was an Etruscan settlement on the site.
|Bonizo “Vir Magnificus” occupies the Etruscan site.
|Construction of the tower commences.
|(28th May) The Church is consecrated.
|The monastery is established by papal bull on the 29th of April 1110 with Guido as “Abbas” with seven or eight monks.
|The Abbey is sacked by the English mercenary Sir John Hawkwood (known as Giovanni Acuto).
|The Abbey is endowed with the Roman church of San Salvatore in Lauro.
|Having been refused food and drink, the outlaw Alfani and his followers storm the Abbey, imprison the monks and lead the naked Abbot round the village with a noose round his “private parts” until he agrees to leave Umbria for ever – after paying a large ransom.
|A severe earthquake causes the top of the tower to fall and leads to the still visible, and dated, buttressing of the west wall.
|The Abbey is secularised and for nearly a hundred years contains no religious community.
|The monastery is reborn under the Cistercian order and struggled for survival for another 38 years.
|The monks depart, leaving only the church that remains active for another 20 years.
|The national suppression of religious houses allows the State to sell the Abbey and the land to a private owner.
|The abandoned ruins of the Abbey are bought by Mr.Guy Norton who sets about the restoration of the entire estate to its present high standard.
|Title to Abbadia Celestina passes to current owners.